The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines a habit as: “a settled tendency or usual manner of behavior, or an acquired mode of behavior that has become nearly or completely involuntary.” In other words, a habit is something that feels natural and needed to function. In your everyday life, what would your habits say about you? Are you engaging in healthy habits or harmful ones? Healthy habits can include eating well, exercising daily, getting enough sleep, and practicing mindfulness. Bad habits can include excessive drinking, smoking, getting poor sleep, and consuming an overabundance of processed and sugary foods. Each set of habits produce an outcome – beneficial or detrimental.
To enrich your life, wellbeing, and outlook, it’s important to set and stick to practical goals. The following habits can help you improve your mental and physical health, reduce your risk for developing certain diseases, and give you more energy. When you take care of yourself, it helps others experience the best version of you. As hospitalists, we cannot overlook the importance of self-care.
Eight Habits to Adopt to Improve Your Life
(For not only you, but your patients, too!)
Start Your Day with Sweat
Daily exercise is important for numerous reasons. It can help control weight, prevent health problems and disease, improve mood, energy, and heart health, strengthen bones, and help you get better sleep. The American Heart Association recommends adults get 150 minutes per week of moderate-intensity aerobic activity, or 75 minutes per week of vigorous aerobic activity, or a combination of both, spread throughout the week.
Organize Your Schedule
Living a decluttered life can help reduce stress, promote productivity, and improve your relationships with family and friends. By staying organized, you are likely to worry less and concentrate more on what truly matters.
Engage in Continuing Education
As we discussed in a prior blog, it’s important that you put yourself in a learning environment that will allow you to grow, refine your skills, and improve the quality of your care as a medical practitioner. Clinicians should consider continued learning an endeavor for the duration of their medical careers. Not only is it essential for maintaining and developing knowledge, skills, and relationships, it ensures the overall safety in individual and team clinical practices.
Journaling is a great tool to use to reduce stress and boost your overall health. Negative emotions can have a damaging impact on your health, including your immune system. By processing these emotions psychologically, you can improve internal problem-solving skills, and decrease anxiety, depression, and negative thought patterns.
Simply reading between 15 and 30 minutes a day can expand your vocabulary and critical thinking skills, improve your memory and cognitive function, and help you become more content and calm. Reading is an activity you can do anytime and anywhere, so it’s an effortless habit to pick up – all you need is dedicated time.
Offering kindness provides great satisfaction emotionally to both the giver and receiver. You can be kind by being empathetic, listening to others, offering to help someone in need, smiling, giving complements, using manners, and practicing self-care. Genuine kindness can be therapeutic and restorative to your health.
Prepare for Rest
Constantly being on the go can take a toll on you mentally and physically. With so many distractions swirling around us, it’s important to take a time-out every now and again to rest and recover. Rest can help heal your body from the ailments of stress, and help you feel renewed and rejuvenated.
The benefits of practicing gratitude are infinite. Practicing gratitude includes being thankful for positive moments in your life. Gratitude also helps keep you optimistic and fulfilled. Daily gratitude practices can include verbally speaking words of thanks out loud, keeping a journal with all you are thankful for, remembering to count your blessings even when times are tough, focusing on your strengths, and complaining less.
The above habits are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to setting sail in a better life direction. We hope you can adopt these and other healthy habits to elevate your life and the lives of others you come into contact with every day.
Learn More About Advanced Care Hospitalists (ACH)
ACH is a Lakeland-based hospitalist group providing comprehensive patient care in community hospitals across Central Florida. Our providers are highly skilled, board-certified internal medicine specialists who are available around-the-clock to meet the care needs of patients from hospital admission through discharge. Post-discharge from the hospital, we continue overseeing patient care for 30 days.
We’ve found that continued care coordination ensures more accurate medication reconciliation, improved compliance with discharge plans, better scheduling of follow-up visits, and fewer hospital readmissions. Our providers do everything in their power to make sure our patients receive the compassionate and comprehensive care they need to promote healing and prevent a second hospital admission.
For more information about our services and our practice, please contact Advanced Care Hospitalists at 863-816-5884 or fill out a contact form online.